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I was looking for something relatively not complex and an one evening type of project to keep the modeling juices flowing. My work for a living job has resulted in some fairly long days and my energy level in the evenings has not been where it normally is. The winter blahs would be a good description.
I discovered the website hoswap.com via a MRH discussion forum post and started getting the daily groups.io email digest. I noticed last week an Accurail single door 50' boxcar lettered for the Reading. It would fix perfectly in my early 1980's Western Maryland Railway layout. I bought it for less than retail and it arrived over the weekend.
Last night my lovely wife was out to dinner with a friend so it was "me" time. Accurail kits are notoriously simple to construct and building one takes me back to my teenager days in the 1980's with the $2.95 Athearn blue box kits, of which many have been upgraded and are still part of my roster. Sitting down at the workbench with Netflix one and a glass of wine I dived in.....
I did make some modifications, I added 1.5 oz of lead wheel weights to take the car way over the NMRA recommended weights, like Joe F I am a firm believer in heavier is better. Cars track better and it does strain my locos to pull a decent cut of heavily weighted cars.
The molded on stirrup steps were the first to go, replaced with A-line wire steps. The wire steps when properly fastened are sturdier during ops sessions than the molded on details. Next I form coupler cut levers from .050 wire. Form a small loop at one end, attach one Details West eye bolt to each end of the car and a small but noticeable detail is done.
I did a reweigh patch around the CAPY, LD LMT numbers. Using Floquil dark green and some painters tape the old weight data was painted over. Digging through my decal box, some 70 ton weight data was found from an old Micro-Scale set, the font type was different so as to reinforce the notion that this was a railroad "quick and dirty" reweigh paint out.
Since I model the late 1970's and early 80's the required 2 panel COTS decals, ACI labels, and U-1 yellow wheel dot were applied.
Using a white ink fine tip pen some carmen's chalk marks were added near the A and B ends on the side sill.
Weathering was some brown acrylic craft paint dry brushed down the roof and side panel seams followed by dry brushing a light grey pastel powder to fade out the entire paint job. Brown powder was applied to the trucks and lower side sill Some orange dust around the door track and the door locking mechanism.
10K resistors were added to the wheel sets as the layout is signaled and uses Digitrax BDL168 detectors for block occupancy. The wheels got a coat of a dirty brown custom mix on their faces and a light coating on the couplers (careful to not get in the pin that rotates the knuckle).
Two hours of labor, I like the effect I got. Thoughts?
This article first appeared on model-railroad-hobbyist.com
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